"My name is Wrabel and I'm gonna play you a bunch of sad songs...[plays a few piano chords] and a happy one."Stephen Wrabel started his set on a stool with a guitar saying, "I guess I'll just start since I'm here." We soon found out that he was going through his set off-list, keeping everyone including himself guessing at which song would be next. Wrabel, his chosen moniker in the industry, told us he wrote that first song ("Lullaby") about a week ago and had to teach himself to play that guitar if he wanted to perform it tonight. Honesty is definitely a theme throughout his lyrics and you can hear it in his vocals. He then goes over to the piano, his usual means of conveyance, to give us "All or Nothing", a song about taking a beat to "try to breathe" because "you'll always find your way back somehow." Inter-song banter is definitely a talent of Wrabel's only surpassed by his voice and lyrics. If you're a fan of EDM music, you may be familiar with his voice from Afrojack's song "Ten Feet Tall" where Wrabel was featured to sing. His acoustic rendition that night was even more stripped down than the official non-Afrojack version, and I wouldn't have had it any other way. That song also gained commercial noteriety (which he mentions in the clip below) when it was featured for a Bud Light Super Bowl ad in 2014. This small bit of trivia may have been an easy way to get my friends to say, "Who? Oh OK!" but, after listening to a few tracks, they quickly changed that tune to "Wow, we want more!" Some fans in the audience, I won't name names, also "wanted more" as he took his sweatshirt off during the set because he was sweating, which subsequently led to him forgetting the words to the beginning of his next song "Honest Man". Luckily, a listener knew it was "it's a cold night with the windows down," which he admitted was also a common theme in his songwriting! The venue, Room 5 in LA, was intimate and everyone in attendance seemed to be a friend of his. (Even his dad flew in to surprise him!) For a new fan like myself, it was great to hear songs from his EP Sideways (go get it, like yesterday please) that I had committed to memory (because that's what you do when you go to a show, it's polite) being performed, but also others that soon became my new faves. His closing song "Jupiter" clearly became my new front-runner, speaking of a love that doesn't work here on Earth but might on the Giant Planet. Like I always say, a little heartbreak can lead to A LOT of great music. Clearly, I'm an optimist. If his voice hasn't sold you (you should really get your ears checked), then check Wrabel out on Twitter and Instagram! Though he only wants you to follow if you "want to get really annoyed" by his tweets and see "30 selfies a day" on Instagram. Personally, I can't get enough! Sideways EP: Apple - Google Play - Amazon Official site - Twitter - Instagram - Facebook All video courtesy of Mathew Tucciarone: YouTube - Music PhotoBlog
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